bans

Fortnite deals with cheat detection false positives, breaks half a million concurrent players

Cheating is bad in online games; we can all agree on that. Having anti-cheat software usually raises some questions back and forth, but the core idea of making sure that cheating is stopped swiftly at the root at least makes a fair amount of sense. Really, the only problem with it in the long term is if it mistakenly flags innocent accounts for immediate banning when they weren’t doing anything wrong. You know, like what seems to be happening to Fortnite players recently.

The studio quickly identified the issue and is working to both fix the problem and correct the automated cheat bans for players unfairly barred from the game; the bug appears to be caused by shooting whilst on a swingset, and players hit by this false positive should no longer be getting fully banned. Still, it takes some time to reverse bans, and it’s hard to argue that this makes the anti-cheat software look good. Unless you think swingsets are inherently evil, we suppose. So that’s a mixed result when the game cracks down hard on cheating, perhaps.

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The Elder Scrolls Online recaps the big events of E3 while players get hit with surprise bans

If you’re fond of The Elder Scrolls Online and have managed to tear yourself away from Morrowind for a few minutes, you probably already caught up on the game’s big announcements at this year’s E3. But there was more stuff going on this year than just that, and the game’s team has helpfully recapped the big events for players unable to attend, including the community meetup and the game’s presence at the Bethesda booth.

Of course, it’s easy to step away from the game if you’re unexpectedly banned, isn’t it? Players who preordered the game through Amazon seem to be having some issues, getting banned despite being players in good standing. Players who ordered physical copies of the game are still waiting on delivery of same, which seems to be the cause behind the unintentional bans. The community service team has been working with affected players as best they are able, but it’s still a bit of a kick for players who have done nothing meriting the banning. So… here’s hoping that if you are looking forward to the game’s next updates, you didn’t order through Amazon.

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Legendary pokemon are teased for Pokemon Go as a new anti-cheat measure auto-bans bots

Remember how last summer was all about Pokémon Go? That’s probably not going to happen again this year, but the team behind the game at Niantic is certainly hoping for something similar with the promise that the summer will be legendary. That certainly alludes to a bunch of legendary Pokémon wandering the world, so if you’ve long been hoping for a Zapdos you could name “Captain Zappywing,” you might be closer than you thought.

Of course, all of that is only if you’re playing the game legitimately. A new anti-cheat measure is being deployed against botting accounts, and rather than bans, it seems to be flagging accounts in a far more insidious manner. The flagged accounts can still play the game… but all they see are common Pokémon, rather than any of the rarer or more desirable ones. The community on Reddit has worked overtime in analyzing the bans and found very few false positives, making it a welcome boon to those playing the game legitimately.

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Black Desert GM punishes a player with a writing assignment

The hard part about being a GM has to be when you’re dealing with a certain brand of player. You know the sort; they’re the ones making other people’s time in the game worse just for giggles. How do you actually punish players who just want to sow chaos and don’t care about the consequences? An enterprising GM for Black Desert tried out a novel technique by banning a reported toxic player… unless said player wrote a 501-word essay.

Of course, there’s more to the story, as it turns out the player in question was reported for being a jerk to roleplayers, and the ban announcement by the GM in question was clearly leaning pretty hard on the “roleplaying” button. The player in question did write as requested and avoided the ban, although it’s not exactly a timeless masterpiece of literature (you can see it in the Reddit thread if you want). Whether or not this was actually effective is up for debate, but we can’t help but think that it was therapeutic for the GM, at the very least. (And as a bonus, there’s always the slim chance that one of us will have to deal with this sort of ban, which will mean we get out of jail for free!)

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Blizzard cracks down on Overwatch aimbot cheaters

OK, cheaters, listen up. You’re jerks, you’re ruining the game for everyone, you’re wasting developer time, which means you’re wasting everyone’s money, you’re not as slick as you think you are, and eventually, you’re gonna get caught, which means you’re wasting your own money.

I’d like to think these are the lessons learned by the latest round of Overwatch cheaters to whom Blizzard has issued ban slips, but alas.

A forum thread baiting hackers with “OH YES FEED ME THOSE SALTY TEARS” (a sentiment I suspect our readers will share) tells the whole story: Blizzard has clearly been cracking down on specific hacks that advertised themselves as undetactable, including the Overjoint and Highnoon aimbots. As Kotaku pointed out, some of the banned hackers as threatening to sue, which is pretty cute.

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EVE Online GMs removed at least 25 trillion ISK worth $400,000 from the game

If you’ve been reading the gaming news this week, you may have heard about the enormous amount of wealth that was recently removed from EVE Online‘s economy when the players behind EVE gambling website IWantISK were banned for real money trading. The figure was initially rumoured to be around 40 trillion ISK, but the only sources for this information at the time were one of the banned players himself and a third party using guesswork. With the release of CCP’s latest monthly economic report, we now have a verified primary source to work from.

Digging into the CSV records attached to CCP Quant’s October economic report, we were able to see that on the day of the ban (October 12th), total ISK supply dropped by 24.85 trillion ISK overnight. Accounting for the average upward movement of ISK over the previous month gives us a figure of around 25.77 trillion ISK that was likely part of the ban wave. This amount of ISK could currently buy you around 20,295 PLEX game time codes on the in-game market, which have a real world value of between $303,000 and $405,000 US depending on the price paid per unit.

Keep in mind that these figures account for only the liquid ISK in the banned players’ accounts. The value of any assets frozen on those accounts could bring the total even higher, but the frozen assets can’t be verified at this point. The bans came after intensive investigation of the accused players for real money trading offences, and happened on the same day that CCP announced that all third-party EVE gambling websites would have to shut down.

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Final Fantasy XIV bans more than 6,000 accounts for RMT

Making money in Final Fantasy XIV isn’t necessarily easy. You have to play the free market quite a bit to acquire large amounts of gil, and you can sometimes make mistakes or bad decisions. Or you can make a really bad decision and just buy gil, in which case you can get caught in another wave of bans. Case in point, the game has banned more than 6,000 accounts for RMT advertisement or participation. So if you bought gil, you saved yourself several days farming it, and then you saved yourself from ever playing the game again for any reason.

As always, players who discover or confirm cheats or exploits are asked to report the problem promptly and avoid being associated in any way with RMT or other forms of cheating. This is the latest in a series of bannings targeting players who violate the game’s terms of service, so your best bet is probably to just avoid buying gil altogether. It just doesn’t work out in your favor.

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The Division subtracts 30,000 cheaters from its playerbase

Cheaters are not wanted in The Division. They’re not wanted in any game, really, but Ubisoft is taking a harder line against cheaters by taking action against 30,000 accounts. This action led to 3,800 permanent bans and many more temporary suspensions, ensuring that anyone caught as a cheater is going to be just a bit more cautious before trying the same thing again.

But the action doesn’t stop there; Ubisoft is preventing recidivism by keeping players from getting a second chance in the first place. Moving forward, players who get caught using cheat engines can say hello to a shiny new permanent ban for a first offense. It’s unclear how a second offense would take place, at that point, but you probably don’t want to know how hard the company would come down on you. In short, don’t cheat.

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The MOP Up: The future of skins in Paragon (May 29, 2016)

The MMO industry moves along at the speed of information, and sometimes we’re deluged with so much news here at Massively Overpowered that some of it gets backlogged. That’s why there’s The MOP Up: a weekly compilation of smaller MMO stories and videos that you won’t want to miss. Seen any good MMO news? Hit us up through our tips line!

This week, Epic announced new character Riktor for its MOBA Paragon and explained the thinking behind its tiered skins system. We also caught wind of a massive ban wave in ARG Ingress and peeked into the Warcraft movie’s prequel novel, which is indeed a thing. Read on for the whole run-down!

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Tree of Savior names and shames banned bots and goldsellers

We have a deeply personal question for you: Are you a bot? Because if so, you might be banned from Tree of Savior right now. This is also true if you’re a gold seller or if you’re a human being using a bot for all of the helpful services a bot can provide. (Like, well, getting your account banned for botting.) Since banning over 3000 cheaters last week, IMC has been posting its list of bans — with names — every single day: 372 on April 21st, 113 on the 22nd, 217 on the 23rd, 206 on the 24th, 230 on the 25th, and 857 yesterday — just under 2000 since the weekend.

Players who have been wrongfully banned should contact the game’s support team for further investigation. Perhaps “qqddaad” was the closest you could get to naming yourself “Sad Dad,” or “nvb” is your longstanding nickname because you’re on the smaller side and it stands for “not very big.” And maybe “sdfgsdfgs” is… um… well, maybe you think it’s cool. If your “name” isn’t in the list, however, you can just enjoy logging into the game with fewer bots or goldsellers.

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WoW multibox reporter banned for ‘breaking TOS’ [Updated]

Here’s an interesting tidbit: Did you know that killing one player in a PvP area in World of Warcraft can get you banned? Not normally, perhaps, but a multiboxer playing on 60 simultaneous accounts reported a player on every one of those accounts, with speculation on Reddit being that it tripped an automated ban on Blizzard’s end. The original thread on the official forums has been deleted, but Reddit’s speculation is still there if you want to examine the various half-bits of evidence. Update: Blizzard has said the player was banned, but not for that reason – see below.

Not in the mood for that sort of thing today? Well, you could purchase the digital deluxe upgrade for Warlords of Draenor, as the various bonuses have been made available for purchase again for a limited time. Or you could jump on down below to check out a comparison of the new view distance boundaries for the live game compared to Legion. Those are a bit less contentious.

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ARK’s upcoming additions include a bowling ball dino and angry bird

Just because a dinosaur is roly poly doesn’t mean it isn’t a force to be reckoned with. ARK: Survival Evolved’s latest addition is the Doedicurus, an herbivore that can literally roll itself (and practically its rider) into a nearly indestructible armored ball able to plow through enemies like they were bowling pins, making it a fun mount for exploration. Get a glimpse of this ball-of-fun in the video below.

The same patch also introduced items to enhance your home and base decorating; there’s a spray paint gun and a plant with stinging spores you can grow to protect your abode. Additionally, devs revealed another dino dossier: the leaping Terror Bird. Possibly angry because of its inability to really fly, this quick-sprinting aggressive bird makes a great combat mount.

For those who missed it, last week the team reiterated what activities will net a full ban on all official servers, including third party cheats, aimbots, ESP cheats, anything else that modifies the game in such a way as to give an unintended advantage, and derogatory and personalized harassment. Players are encouraged to send the team reports if they come across these problems.

Finally, ARK is free for everyone on Steam this weekend!

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Bungie promises to ban cheaters in Destiny

It’s not exactly a drastic reach to say that people shouldn’t cheat when playing an online game. People should definitely not be cheating during Destinys Trials of Osiris, and it gets even worse when the means of that cheating involves keeping your opponents from reconnecting to the game. Yes, apparently you could do that, but the “egregious” offenders who did precisely that are now enjoying a brand-new ban.

There’s no word on exactly how many players were caught in the bannings, but the intention seems to be to make it clear that cheaters are caught and punished. Some players ran afoul of a bug as well, causing them to lose connection and have similar troubles, so it’s also unclear how many players were impacted by either issue. Regardless, take this as a life lesson: Don’t cheat. Good advice all around!

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